Download Every Tongue Got to Confess: Negro Folk-Tales from the Gulf States Audiobook

Every Tongue Got to Confess: Negro Folk-Tales from the Gulf States Audiobook, by Zora Neale Hurston Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Zora Neale Hurston Narrator: Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2005 ISBN: 9780060842741
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African-American folklore was Zora Neale Hurston's first love. Collected in the late 1920's Every Tongue Got to Confess, from the celebrated author of Their Eyes Were Watching God, is published here for the first time, beautifully performed by Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis.

Hilarious, bittersweet, and often saucy, these folk-tales provide a verdant slice of African-American life in the rural South at the turn of the twentieth century. They capture the heart and soul of the vital, independent, and creative community that so inspired Zora Neale Hurston.

In Every Tongue Got to Confess, Hurston records, with uncanny precision, the voices of ordinary people -and no two actors better capture this world than Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis. They pay tribute to the richness of Black vernacular -- its crisp self-awareness, singular wit, and improvisational wordplay. These folk-tales reflect the joys and sorrows of the African-American experience, celebrate the redemptive power of storytelling, and showcase the continuous presence in America of an Afticanized language that flourishes to this day.

Performed by Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “Splendidly vivid and true.”

    New York Times

  • “An extraordinary treasure.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Quite funny, and profoundly emblematic.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “In Every Tongue Got to Confess, the book’s great value for us today is in the way it returns us to Hurston’s literary and academic roots as a folklorist and anthropologist and to the people and material which inspired and enriched her fiction.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “A real song of the South.”


  • “Entertaining and thought provoking.”


  • An Audie Award Finalist for Multi-Voiced Performance

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About the Author

Zora Neale Hurston (1891–1960) was a novelist, folklorist, and anthropologist whose fictional and factual accounts of black heritage remain unparalleled. In addition to her most celebrated work, the 1937 novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, her books include Barracoon, a New York Times bestseller.

About the Narrators

Ruby Dee (1922–2014) was a multi-award-winning actress, playwright, screenwriter, and activist. During her seven-decade career, she won a Grammy, Emmy, Obie, and Drama Desk award and was nominated for an Academy Award. She was also the recipient of a National Medal of Arts, a Kennedy Center Honor, and Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award. She is perhaps best known for originating the role of Ruth Younger in the stage and film versions of A Raisin in the Sun, but she also had roles in Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing and Jungle Fever. She was also known for her civic work with husband Ossie Davis. She also wrote plays, fiction, and a column in New York’s Amsterdam News. Born in Cleveland, she worked initially with the American Negro Theater in Harlem, where she grew up.

Ossie Davis (1917-2005) was an American actor, writer, and director best known for his many screen roles and for his involvement in the civil rights movement. Among his film and television credits are The Cardinal, Do the Right Thing, Doctor Doolittle, and The L Word. He was a featured speaker at the funerals of Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, and was inducted into the NAACP Image Awards Hall of Fame. In 1995, both he and his wife Ruby Dee received the National Medal of Arts—the highest honor given to an artist by the United States Government.